In first-instance ruling by Anshun Intermediate People’s Court, Wei Mingjin also had all his property confiscated, while two of his accomplices were given prison terms of 15 years and two years respectively. Wei and one of the accomplices have appealed the decision to the provincial higher court.
The court found that Wei, a corporate representative of the Jin'an Food Development Co. in Guizhou province, had sold 19,000 tonnes of tainted oil, with a total revenue of RMB170m (US$27m) to Sichuan province and Chongqing municipality, based on trading records. His company deals with edible oil, animal husbandry and agricultural processing.
Wei had made a bulk purchase of the waste of slaughtered cattle between June 2009 and May 2013 to produce cooking oil that was unfit for human consumption, according to the in a first-instance ruling. The death sentence will be reprieved for two years.
“The Supreme People's Court and the Supreme People's Procuratorate issued interpretations to set standards for the punishment for food safety crimes in 2013 in order to form a more rigorous system checking food safety violators,” said Xinhua, China’s official news service, in explanation of the sentence.